Provincial Health Officer updates order to require BC health regulatory colleges to record the COVID-19 vaccination status of registrants on an ongoing basis
The Provincial Health Officer (PHO) has updated an information-sharing order first issued on March 7, 2022 that required all BC health regulatory colleges, including the College of Traditional Chinese Medicine Practitioners and Acupuncturists of British Columbia (CTCMA), to record the COVID-19 vaccination status of registrants by March 31, 2022.
In the amended order, titled Health Professionals COVID-19 Vaccination Status Information – June 10, 2022, the March 31 deadline has been removed and vaccination status collection has been made an ongoing requirement for the colleges. The order also retains the authority for the PHO and Medical Health Officers (MHO) to request vaccination status information from colleges.
To meet the deadline specified in the original order, the College reviewed data provided by the Ministry of Health on the vaccination status of registrants. Then the College contacted registrants the Ministry was unable to provide current COVID-19 vaccination status for, and registrants recorded as unvaccinated. As required by the order, the College requested that those registrants provide proof of vaccination or proof of an exemption from the PHO.
The original PHO order required each College to disclose to the PHO or MHO, on request, registrant information regarding vaccination status, either in aggregate or by individual. The PHO subsequently released aggregate data on the COVID-19 vaccination status of regulated health professionals in the province on May 10, 2022.
CTCMA registrants who provided proof of vaccination or exemption on or before March 31, 2022 are not required to take any action at this time as a result of the amended PHO order. However, if you are a registrant who did not respond to the request for COVID-19 vaccine information from the College in March 2022, and have since become vaccinated or received an exemption, you can Complete the COVID-19 Vaccination Status Form on the Registrant Portal at any time.
New registrants registered on or after April 1, 2022 must provide information on their vaccination status. If you fall into this group, you will receive an email with instructions about how to provide proof of vaccination or exemption on the Registrant Portal.
The Ministry of Health has indicated that colleges will be asked for an update on COVID-19 vaccination data to see how vaccination rates have changed since the Ministry’s original request for data.
The amended order also:
Clarifies the definition of “vaccine card” as it applies to people vaccinated outside of Canada, by providing information on what form proof of vaccination may be provided in and what must be included in the text of the proof, whether electronic or in writing.
Enables post-secondary institutions to request from health regulatory colleges the vaccination status of registrants applying for admission to, or enrolled in, a health science program. This will enable a health science program to determine eligibility of a registrant to attend at places that are subject to the Hospital and Community (Health Care and Other Services) COVID-19 Vaccination Status Information and Preventive Measures Order and the Resident Care COVID-19 Preventive Measure Order.
The College will continue to inform registrants about any further initiatives or policy directions regarding COVID-19 vaccination of BC health professionals that are communicated to the colleges by the PHO.